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Charges dismissed in Stagliano case

John Stagliano, a libertarian-oriented producer of adult entertainment who sometimes goes by the monicker “Buttman,” has finally won vindication in his long legal ordeal at the hands of federal bluenoses. The Washington Post has the story:

A federal judge dismissed the first obscenity prosecution brought in the nation’s capital in a quarter-century on technical grounds Friday, tossing out charges against John A. Stagliano and two companies associated with the adult video producer based in Van Nuys, Calif.

Acquitting Stagliano, John Stagliano Inc. and Evil Angel Productions Inc. before they began their defense, U.S. District Court Judge Richard J. Leon said evidence presented by the Justice Department’s Obscenity Prosecution Task Force in the four-day trial was “woefully insufficient” to link defendants to the production and distribution of two DVD videos at the heart of the case.

Go out and rent a few videos to celebrate this free speech victory!

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  • Boy, having been following this via Wendy McElroy for a little while now, I gotta admit I didn’t expect this outcome–it seemed like they were all set to quickly conclude that Stagliano weighs the same as…a duck, and commence the burrrning forthwith.

    Still not exactly impressed that it was an evidentiary failure to connect the defendants to the eevil materials that prompted the dismissal–I don’t see any sort of principled “stop harassing the peaceable” verbiage anywhere–but, as David Codrea says, “cum ulla sella in pugno taberna”.

    I guess we’ll see whether further shenanigans attend, in due time.

  • “But, added, “The government has bottomless resources and can come after me at any time.”

    That’s where the problem is, that government has bottomless resources for any bullshit, so they can spend millions of frivolous lawsuits, billions on “task forces” who do nothing but stage crimes where none existed, fight terrors of their own definition, and their “industry” is growing every day.

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